Quick lineart for illustrations and webcomics

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Introduction 📢

Hello, I am Lepus Nix and I am here to share a process that made my linework faster, cleaner and more accurate.
I've used this in my webcomic “Philosopher’s Spectrum” that is available on webtoon canvas.

At the end of this tutorial, making a clear lineart, should be a fast, easy and fun task.

A-Preparing 🛠️

With a satisfying sketch that is ready to ink, we can start the preparation for our lineart.

1-Changing the color of the sketch

First, it is important to make the sketch another color to differentiate it with the lineart.
⇒ The color of the sketch can be changed to your liking using the [Layer Color] effect
⇒ To return to the original color, deactivate the [Layer Color] effect by clicking on it again while on the correct sketch layer.

2-Creating a vector layer

The lineart, in this process, is made on a vector layer because the lines can be adjusted later, in many ways, without losing the quality.
⇒ To make a new vector layer either go to [Layer]->[New Layer]->[Vector Layer] or click on the button shown below.
⇒ A vector layer should have a cube Icon on the side.

3-Tools to be used

The tools we are going to use are all available for Clip Studio Paint pro.

i- The [Curve] subtool, to make the lines ;
ii- The [Connect Vector] subtool, to combine the lines seamlessly ;
iii- The [Vector] eraser subtool, to quickly delete lines up to an intersection ;
iv- The [Hard] eraser subtool, for granular control on what needs to be deleted ;
v- The [Object] operation subtool, to adjust and modify the lines.

B- Doing the lineart 🖌️

1-Using the curve subtool

In this tutorial, the curve subtool will be used for the lineart.
That tool can draw lines and curves with minimum effort.

While on the vector layer above the sketch:
i- Click and hold to make a line;
ii- Release the click and move around to adjust the curve. Click again to apply.

⇒ For stronger curves, divide the task into 2 or more lines and connect those lines using the [Connect Vector] subtool.

2-Connecting lines

When two lines meet on their endings, it is possible to connect them as one single line using the [Connect Vector] subtool.
⇒ Apply the [Connect Vector] subtool by clicking and dragging it so that it touches the two endings that should be connected.

⇒ For the strong curves that we had to divide into 2 or more lines, this subtool will make it so they are combined as a single line.

Note: If the [Connect Vector] subtool does not work correctly, it means the target lines are too close to other lines. To solve that, try:

i- Increasing the size of the lineart on the canvas before applying the [Connect Vector] subtool. Line quality will be kept by the vector layer ;
ii- Decreasing the brush size of the [Connect Vector] subtool.

3-Erasing lines

⇒ Lines that crosses each other can be erased to the intersection by using the |Vector] eraser.
⇒ The |Hard] eraser is useful for a more granular control for lines that do not have to be erased until the intersection.
⇒ Sometimes the |Vector] eraser leaves a small part of the line near the intersection and the |Hard] eraser is also useful then.

Tip: The [Vector] eraser can also be used like this.

4- Adjusting lines

If needed, It is possible to re-adjust a line that you drew, using the object operation subtool.
First, make sure the [Mode] in the [Tool Property] is on “Move control points and Scale/Rotate”.
Click on the line and you will see two squares on each side of the line and a circle.
⇒ Clicking and dragging the squares 🟩 will allow you to move that ending of the line where you want to ;
⇒ Clicking and dragging on the circle 🟢 will allow you to adjust the curve.

5- Further modifications

Once the lineart is done, one of the advantages of using vectors is that it is possible to modify it further, using the [Object] operation subtool.
⇒ The brush size can be changed, the type of brush used, the color and the aliasing option among other things.
⇒ Remember the lines can be stretched or shrunk without losing quality.

C- Examples of use 🤯

This process can save a lot of time and helped me a lot when I worked on my webcomic.
The time spent when drawing a line and having to [Ctrl]+[Z] every 2 seconds is no more.

⇒ By using 3D models and premade poses available on Clip Studio Assets, it is possible to reduce the sketching time.

⇒ On Clip Studio Paint EX, it is possible to convert 3D objects to lines and tones. Using those lines as a sketch, and doing the lineart as described above, the results can be breathtaking.

⇒ There are more tools that can be used to improve on your lineart and process.
For example: The |Adjust Vector] subtool can modify part of the lines, the |Continuous Curve] and the |Bezier Curve] subtool can also be used to make difficult curves.

The [Curve] subtool paired with the advantages of vectors made my drawing process faster and more fun.
I hope it does the same for everyone reading this.

Thank you, and congratulations on reading this far, check the webtoon in which I used this process here.

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